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Old 08-08-2007, 02:58 PM
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Default Shopping for the right saw..

Looking for a saw to cut the fire bricks needed for this project and I will also be needing to cut some slate down the road. I have be told I might need 2 different blades, one for the slate and one for the bricks. I also think I should get a 10" blade. Any suggestions on the right saw. Would like to keep the cost to about 500 dollars or less. Also wondering about cutting round shapes is this done with a sanding disc or what is the best method for cutting round shapes.Thanks in advance ....wayne
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Old 08-08-2007, 03:04 PM
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Default Re: Shopping for the right saw..

Wayne,

A lot of us have purchased the brick saw from Harbor freight. It runs around $200.00 US. I'm on my second blade and it's still running strong. I did fry the start capacitor but was able to fix if for under $6.00. They also offer a 2 year warranty for $36.00. In regard to round shapes - you can get close but it takes some effort.

Les...
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Old 08-08-2007, 05:30 PM
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Hi Wayne,
a diamond blade will cut anything you will need to cut in making your oven. Some companies over here even use them for cutting up cars into pieces (motor wreckers). That said, they will only cut straight cuts and if you try to cut curves, you will wear out the diamond tips on the edge thus reducing the clearance required for the efficient and safe operation of the blade.
To cut external curves, eg. the hearth bricks to fit inside the first soldier course, you will need to make several cuts to make as suggested a rough circular face.
Should you require a smooth circular surface, you can purchase a disk for an angle grinder and finish the surface with that as I did. See:

http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f21/...-4-a-2045.html (Neillís Pompeii #4)

permalink #8 are pics of the disk and the granite slab that i cut and finished but not yet polished.
If you need to cut concave or inside circular cuts, you will need to buy the appropriate diamond circle cutters which will be quite expensive or get a contractor to cut them for you.

Neil
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Old 08-08-2007, 06:02 PM
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Default Re: Shopping for the right saw..

Can't go wrong with the 10" Harbor Freight saw and their $30 diamond blade.
I did the "cut to fit" method on my dome to minimize mortar lines, requiring hundreds of cuts and countless hrs...........this saw performed flawlessly.

Circles can be cut by the relief cut method mentioned above, then simply cut off the slivers along your line....For those comfortable with a saw, you can do quite a bit of freehanding/nibbling on a wet saw - without the dust and flying debri of a grinder (a diamond blade is considerably safer than a wood cutting blade on a table or circular saw)...probably not recommended for a novice, but the experienced tile layers and masons are nodding in agreement.

Just don't tell my employer that I am endorsing a Chinese power tool (I work for a US tool manufacturer)
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Old 08-08-2007, 07:06 PM
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Default Re: Shopping for the right saw..

I've done quite a bit of whittling and fancy cutting with my Harbor Freight 10" wet saw. There are two kinds of blades for this kind of saw. The 30 dollar number (And the thirty-nine dollar Home Depot equivilant which I think has a little more diamond to it) is smooth on the rim and is absolutely safe to use. You can put your finger on it when it's running (you didn't hear that from me). It's made for tile cutting. There is a segmented blade that costs closer to 100usd, that is made for brick and stone, which will cut faster and last longer, but you really don't need it for this project, and you have to keep your distance from the cutting blade.
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Old 08-09-2007, 06:21 AM
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Default Re: Shopping for the right saw..

Wayne,

I thought I would put in my two cents from the novice gallery. After much deliberation, I puchased the Harbor Frieght 10"we saw. Best purchase I made. Cut the brick like butter. I'm now getting ready to use it to cut the procelian floor tile that I am using for my counter tops. The trial cuts went well and I expect it to perform well.

Sharon
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Old 08-09-2007, 10:36 AM
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Default Re: Shopping for the right saw..

Another vote for the Harbor Freight saw. I'm still on my first blade and am now using it to cut the red brick that I'm using for the outer arches (oven and wood storage). IT department wants to use it for the tile job in the laundry room after I'm done with it. I'm betting you can sell it for $100 on Craigslist after you're done. Unless you come up with another priority project.
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Old 08-09-2007, 12:06 PM
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Thumbs up Re: Shopping for the right saw..

Quote:
Originally Posted by swripley View Post
Wayne,

I thought I would put in my two cents from the novice gallery. After much deliberation, I puchased the Harbor Frieght 10"we saw. Best purchase I made. Cut the brick like butter. I'm now getting ready to use it to cut the procelian floor tile that I am using for my counter tops. The trial cuts went well and I expect it to perform well.

Sharon
Sharon- Be sure to post the outcome on the tile results with the HF saw I got one as a second to my MK and its a little workhorse but when it came to a tile job I was doing it did not make the cut so to speak. It was white tile and even with my 100.00 blade one it, it had just enough wobble to chip the glaze I curious as to what your results are gonna be. Please let me know either through here or a PM.

As to the general consensus on the HF saw I agree, its a really good saw for this project and the blades at HF are excellent its all I use on my grinders for stone. I get the 3 pack and I have tried almost all the other blades out there, for the money (actually better than for the money) you cannot beat them.
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Old 08-10-2007, 08:31 AM
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Default Re: Shopping for the right saw..

I got the $80 Home Depot 7" workforce saw and it cuts through brick just fine but I seriously doubt its ability to do much more. It has a depth of cut about which lets you go through a brick on its flat side if you flip and pass it on the other side. Unfortunately it can only taper about an inch of the edge of the bricks so it helps when setting the bricks and the inner edge of them will have a smaller mortar joint but the outer edge has a fat mortar joint. I like the table saw format and I couldn't find a 10" saw with that style for under $600. If the HF saw can do the tapering it is well worth the $200. My two cents.
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Old 08-10-2007, 06:23 PM
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Default Re: Shopping for the right saw..

Thanks everyone. I live in Canada and thought the shipping and border hasstle might be too unpredictable, there is no Harbour Freight stores here. Found a similar saw here in Canada from "Princess Auto" I am sure it will do the trick. Now I know what I need for a blade etc......thanks Wayne
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